What a week! I don’t know about you, but I’m ready to sit back and read some comics. The weekend is finally here, and the world can relax and rest once more — but the comics industry has been busy too, you know, and the last seven days have seen a flurry of comics-based news and announcements fly past at high speed.
ComicsAlliance has got your back, though: when it comes to comics, we never slow down, so here’s a look back and just what’s been going on. New comics, new stories, new podcasts, new art being made — it’s all part of the ComicsAlliance Weekender!
In the golden age of newspapers, the comics pages were often a draw for readers — with the colorful palette of Robert Outcault's Yellow Kid being the source of the term “yellow journalism” — and so editors, acknowledging what they owed to the funny pages, made concessions to that. Works by such masters as Herriman and McCay were allowed room to breathe, and to display their ingenuity in full-page panoramas.
By the time Calvin and Hobbes debuted in 1985, this was no longer the case. The comics pages were increasingly cramped, with cartoonists being forced by their syndicates to adhere to a strict format for their Sunday pages that would allow papers to cut panels to reduce space even more. But Bill Watterson dreamed of the beautiful vistas of Slumberland and Coconino County, and he fought for them.
Each weekday, ComicsAlliance brings you a carefully selected variety of links from around the web about comics and comics-related media, including movies, video games, toys, and whatever else might be worth noting. Quite frankly, these are items you may just need to know about to have a productive day. Take a look at today's hand-picked links after the jump.
Last Friday, the Billy Ireland Cartoon Library and Museum at Ohio State University opened an incredible pair of exhibits featuring the art of Calvin and Hobbes creator Bill Watterson and Cul de Sac creator Richard Thompson, and I don't think I have ever wanted to go see an art exhibit more. Curators Jenny Robb and Caitlin McGurk have assembled an incredible collection of original art from Calvin and Hobbes organized by season, as well as Watterson's actual tools of the trade, featuring hilarious commentary by the man himself. Unfortunately, like many people in this world, I am nowhere near Columbus, Ohio.
The good news, however, is that the filmmakers behind Dear Mr. Watterson, a documentary about Calvin & Hobbes and its impact, were in attendance snapping pictures so that the rest of us could live vicariously through them. Check out a few of our favorites below!
Hosted every year in France, the Angoulême International Comics Festival is the biggest comic con in the world, surprising even San Diego's mighty Comic-Con International by tens of thousands of attendees. But like the San Diego show and its Will Eisner Comic Industry Awards, Angoulême comes with its own venerable awards celebrating sequential art from around the world, the most auspicious of which is the Angoulême Grand Prix, given every year to a living comics creator as a kind of lifetime achievement award. This year's went to Calvin & Hobbes creator Bill Watterson, who's certainly deserving of the honor.
It's been an odd year for Bill Watterson. The iconic Calvin and Hobbes creator -- whose reclusive nature has informed his legacy almost as much as his brilliant comic strip in recent years -- saw the release last month of a documentary about the cartoonist and his legendary comic strip. Shortly before its release, Watterson engaged in a rare interview as well.
After all of that, it seemed as if the increased attention on the cartoonist would begin to wane again. Instead, it's only going to increase, as its been revealed that actor Leonardo DiCrapio will be producing a biopic of Watterson.
It's almost silly to say Bill Watterson's Calvin and Hobbes comic strip, which ceased publication -- brace yourself -- nearly 18 years ago, was influential. That's beyond obvious.
But that doesn't mean it isn't enjoyable to hear a slew of actors, cartoonists and other artistic folks talk about the impact the strip had on their lives. Based on the trailer, that seems to be the thrust of director Joel Allen Schroeder's new documentary Dear Mr. Watterson, which comes to theaters next month. Check out the trailer below.
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